Written By: Kelly Blaine, Founding Partner and President
When I was eight and my brother ten, my mother went to college. She somehow managed to be a full time student and a full time mother without us ever noticing a disruption in our lives. I still marvel at her dedication and ability to be a mother first, most and always above her education and her career.
It was a rare thing for her not to be home when we got off the school bus, but being a good mother, she had taught us well enough to know how to behave when those times did happen.
One day, my brother and I (roughly twelve and ten at this point) got off the bus and let ourselves into the house through the garage. Her car was not there, so we assumed she had simply not made it back from class yet. Always starved after school, we wasted no time making a beeline for the kitchen. A minute or two passed before we heard a “moo” come from the back of the house. We both froze, looked at each other, and said, “Did you hear that!?!” We recognized the sound from a toy we had: you turned it over, and as you turned it back again it would “moo.”
We stood perfectly still with heightened senses and adrenaline now pulsing through our veins. After a few minutes of silence we decided that it must have “just settled in the toy box,” and went back to stuffing our faces as fast as we could make a snack.
Just as that adrenaline rush began to ebb, “MOOOOO!” There it was again. This time, there was no question of what it was, or where it came from; just the hair-raising knowledge that it couldn’t do it on it’s own. “It has to be Honey.” We were certain our mother, “Honey,” was behind this, but her car was missing – therefore she could not possibly be doing it because she could not possibly be home.
Back and forth we went to the garage, again and again, to make sure her car had not magically reappeared as the sounds of this once loved mooing toy turned fiendish. This went on for an eternity (at least five minutes) before we knew we had no choice but to go investigate the source. Being the kind older brother he was, John naturally put me in front as we slowly began to make our way down the hallway. Past his bedroom door we crept, me reaching back with a death grip on him, and him pushing me forward with a death grip on me. “MOOOOO!” Past the bookcase we inched, knuckles white. I am positive my hair was standing straight up on my head.
The mooing came faster the closer we got. Almost to our parent’s bedroom door my foot began to cross in front of it when in all of her 4’11” glory a screaming banshee burst into the hallway, arms raised and screeching. To this day I still have not deduced how my brother, who was behind me, managed to pull me under him and trample me as he clawed his way to safety, the sounds of our mother’s uncontrollable cackling following us. There she stood, doubled over in the hallway, completely powerless from the laughter, her and that blasted toy cow canister in hand.
In her defense she came by her little trickster side honestly, it being passed down from her own mother, who is legendary for her mischievousness. All of these years later she claims she is picked on now that I am old enough to repay her lessons of my childhood. And oh the lessons; so many important and invaluable ones that I have learned from this darling little woman I am gifted to call mother. Lessons that have become the core of who I am leaving memories that have shaped and molded me and that still warm me from the inside out. Because of her I have manners and know how and when to be a lady. Being a tomboy, that isn’t just a minor footnote. Compassion. Laughter. Faithfulness. The healing power of a loving touch. How to hurtle piles of laundry in defense of your children. Being the keeper of the family treasures, she is where I get my love for all things family and heirloom and remembering.
So, here’s to mothers, every single one of you. Those that have borne us and borne with us. I am convinced you need not to have birthed a child to be a remarkable one or to have a profound and beautiful impact on the lives of those you touch. And on this day that we celebrate you, may you feel the joy you have poured into our lives returned to you a thousand-fold and more.
Happy Mother’s Day!